The Myth of Objectivity

In the context of news and media, there is a popular belief that journalists and reporters are ethically bound to avoid injecting any of their personal opinions into their work.  This assumption leads many people into a blind belief of anything that is reported by the news agencies.  The unfortunate impact of this phenomenon is that so many people accept what is reported to them in the news without any skepticism or question that it is quite possible for the masses to be manipulated.

In the world that we live in, total separation of thought and action is not possible.  This means that the personal views & opinions of news journalists cannot be prevented from reflection in their actions.  Because of this, objectivity is really a myth that is propagated to create a false sense of trust in news reporting.  The unfortunate result is a large amount of people who allow the television, newspaper, or radio to do their thinking for them.

My belief is that the marketplace of ideas would be much better off if people simply admitted their biases up-front, and then engaged in an open discussion with all of the cards face-up on the table.  Speaking for myself, I am much more prone to respect the opinions and viewpoints of somebody whose ideas I vehemently disagree with, but do not attempt to conceal their biases behind a fictitious cloak of objectivity.  I hold very little respect for somebody that hides their opinions behind a pretentious veil of imagined objectivity instead of respecting the intelligence of the audience.

In the end, objectivity is a fanciful myth that is propagated by the arrogant and self-important.  It is a presumption that people do not possess the intellectual capacity to make their own conclusions in light of all the facts & opinions.  If we wish to exist in the world of reality, it would be wise to understand “objectivity” as a tool that is used to conceal biases and generate a false sense of trust to manipulate the audience.

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